Patriotic Pony: 1972 Ford Mustang Grande Sprint Edition

Manufacturers often tap into patriotic fervor when developing a new model, and Ford is no exception. Flagging Mustang sales and the upcoming Munich Olympics prompted the company to introduce the Sprint Edition to its 1972 Mustang range. This Grande Sprint is an original classic featuring a freshly rebuilt V8. It has cosmetic shortcomings but is rock-solid and ready to find a new home. Therefore, the seller has listed the Sprint here on Craigslist in Rowland Heights, California. They set their price at $12,000, and I must say a big thank you to Barn Finder T.J. for spotting this patriotic pony.

Mustang sales declined by nearly 25% in 1971, and with Ford knowing that its replacement was waiting in the wings for a 1974 introduction, it wasn’t keen to spend a lot of money on updates with a limited life span. The world was preparing for the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Germany, and nothing ignites patriotism in the population’s heart like a global sporting event. Ford tapped into those feelings with the Mustang Sprint Edition. It was a cosmetic enhancement package with a distinctive Red, White, and Blue paint combination.

The Sprint was available in two forms, with Package A providing the unique paint and interior trim while adding $156 to the Mustang’s sticker price. The more expensive option, which I believe this Grande features, added Magnum 500 wheels and minor upgrades to the suspension and tires for $347.46. This beauty is largely unmolested, although the fact the American flags are missing from the rear quarter panels suggests it may have received a repaint.

It still presents well, although a few visible flaws and defects may prompt the new owner to perform a light cosmetic restoration to reclaim its former glory. They won’t face rust repairs because the underside shots and life in a dry climate have left this Mustang as solid as a rock. The trim and tinted glass are in good order, and apart from one missing center cap, the wheels look extremely nice.

Mustang buyers could order their new 1972 Grande with a six under the hood, but this car’s original owner selected the 302ci V8 producing 141hp and 243 ft/lbs of torque. Its three-speed automatic transmission and power assistance for the steering and front disc brakes confirm the more luxurious approach taken by Ford with the Grande. Increasing weight and tighter emission laws stifled performance, with this car capable of covering the ¼-mile in 17.9 seconds off the showroom floor. That figure is relatively modest, but some upgrades mean our feature car should provide performance improvements.

The V8 has recently been rebuilt, and an upgraded intake and 4-barrel Edelbrock carburetor will help it breathe significantly better. We can speculate on the power gains, but they would be measurable and apparent whenever the driver floors the gas. The seller states the engine starts at the first turn of the key and that the Mustang is in excellent mechanical health. It is ready to provide its new owner with immediate motoring fun.

The Sprint Package’s color combination continued inside, with the seats wearing White and Blue covers with Red piping. The remaining upholstered surfaces feature White vinyl, with Dark Blue carpet covering the floors. The interior condition is impressive for a vehicle of this age with such light trim. There is no significant wear and no rips on the cloth or vinyl. The dash looks excellent, and nothing has succumbed to UV exposure. A more modern stereo occupies the factory radio’s rightful place, but that appears to be the only addition. The Grande Package brought increased sound-deadening material to isolate occupants from the outside world, while this car also features welcome touches like ice-cold air conditioning and power windows.

Ford sold 125,903 Mustangs in 1972, with 9,383 buyers ticking the box for the Sprint Edition. That equates to nearly 7.5% of total sales, confirming buyers viewed it as excellent value for money. It is unclear how many survive, but if those featured on Barn Finds are an accurate guide, there may not be many kicking about. Regular readers are aware of the popularity of First Generation Mustangs on our site, but this is only the sixth Sprint we’ve seen. It ticks some crucial boxes courtesy of its V8 engine, rust-free status, and overall originality. It would take little effort to make it “pop,” but would you consider adding it to your garage to ensure that happens?

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